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Citizens of our great country, the United States, have learned to be self-sufficient. It is a trait that has been ingrained into the very fabric of our makeup. Our founding fathers created a very important document to celebrate this independence and the name was apropos; The Declaration of Independence.

The American dream is all about working to create a better life for you and your family. If you work hard enough you can be anything and do anything you want. No job or riches are out of the question when you work hard enough. It is a wonderful dream to have. One problem has arisen, the dream has led people to feelings of greed, selfishness and materialism, but the dream should not be the one to take the blame. The human heart thrives on being self-sufficient. Many of us want to be known as someone who has done it all and built it all ourselves. We would like to be our own saviors. These thoughts and feelings have permeated our culture to the point that we celebrate it and defend it to the death.

This weekend at church we talked about dependence on God. In theory this is a concept that should be easy to get. The almighty maker of heaven and earth, of course I can trust him with my life, the good and the bad, knowing that he has my best interest in mind. Doesn’t everyone sitting in church fully depend on God for everything in their life? The truth is that dependence is only easy when everything is going well in life. During those times it is very easy to say you depend on God for everything. The truth is, constant, continuous, “no matter what,” dependence on anyone other than you is very difficult; it is not something that we as a people generally promote.

So what does it take to depend on God when everything in our culture is working against us? You should know up front that there is no easy program and it is a lifetime of struggle.

There were three ideas of dependence talked about in the sermon that I want to share which will put us all on the right track towards dependence on God.

1. Dependence on God is not dependent on us understanding.
There are certain things in life that will not make sense. Why did I lose my job? Why do I have this disease? Why didn’t the relationship work? In those moments when we don’t understand what God is doing in our life we tend to walk away. But there is another way. The disciples walked with Jesus everyday for three years. There are times in the scriptures when it says the disciples didn’t understand what Jesus said or did. They easily could have walked away when they didn’t get it…but instead they continued to walk with him, learning more and more along the way. Let’s walk with Jesus when we don’t understand instead of walking away.

2. Dependence on God is impossible.
That’s right, dependence left up to us is impossible. Left on our own we choose to depend on ourselves. Why would we ever expect dependence to be easy? We need to acknowledge that we are powerless to control everything (I know it sounds like the first step in AA, but it is true!). God has proven himself to be faithful and his promises have always come true. He knows the plans that he has for us, plans to prosper us. Let’s declare that with God all things are possible. In this trust and declaration let us know that he will always come through and with his help we can depend on him.

3. Dependence rarely works on our timetable.
No matter how much we try to plan out everything and ask God to bless it, when we want it, and how we want it, it doesn’t work that way. We think we have the perfect picture of how things should work. It my life only went this way, it would be perfect. But we limit God when we want him to work by our plan. God has a plan and he has his own time-table.

When we start to understand dependence in this new light we can see that we don’t need to have it all together to depend on God. Instead, we can finally admit we don’t have what it takes to do it by alone and we can trust in the one who has proven himself faithful. So, let’s make a declaration in the year 2012. A declaration of dependence on God.

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